Florida Gains New National Cemeteries in Tallahassee and Scottsmoor

On February 18, 2014 the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced the official names of two new National Cemeteries to be developed in Florida. The Cape Canaveral National Cemetery will be built in Scottsmoor and the Tallahassee National Cemetery will be built in Tallahassee.

The CCNC will be a 318-acre property in northern Brevard County that will allow more than 163,000 veterans and their eligible family members to be buried on its grounds. The TNC is a 250-acre area that will allow for 83,000 gravesites for eligible veterans and family members.

To qualify for burial in a National Cemetery veterans must have received any discharge except dishonorable. Those who served after September 7, 1980 as enlisted and October 16, 1981 as an officer must have done so for 24 consecutive months or for the full period the servicemember was called to active duty. Servicemembers who lose their lives while on active duty are also eligible for burial in a National Cemetery.

Certain family members of eligible veterans or servicemembers may also qualify for burial in National Cemeteries. This includes the spouse, surviving spouse, or dependent, even if the veteran or servicemember was not buried in a National Cemetery. Minor children under the age of 21, children under the age of 23 and enrolled in a full-time educational institution, and unmarried adult children of eligible veterans are also able to be buried in a National Cemetery. In some cases, biological and adoptive parents may also be buried with their deceased child if he or she served in the Armed Forces.

Burial benefits may be available to the family of a veteran whether they are to be interred in a National Cemetery or not. Benefits may include the burial plot in a National Cemetery, Government headstone or marker, burial flag, and Presidential Memorial Certificate. Burial allowances may be available if the veteran’s death was not service-connected, the veteran had a discharge other than dishonorable, and the family was not compensated for burial expenses from another agency or employer. The full terms for burial allowances can be found on the VA’s website.

A service-connected disability is one of the many ways that a veteran can qualify for additional burial allowances. If you are the surviving spouse or dependant of a deceased veteran contact The Law Offices of Veterans Help Group to find out about potential family benefits to which you may be entitled: 1-855-855-8992.